Twitchhiker – How One Man Travelled the World by Twitter – Paul Smith.
Rarely a day goes by now where we do not read, see or hear about the power of social media and networking. I believe that one of the most innovative uses of that in recent years has been the “ Twitchhiker”.
In early 2009, @Twitchhiker ( journalist Paul Smith) Paul came up with a quest – to see how far across the globe he could get, relying solely on the goodwill of the Twitter community and to raise money for charity as he went.
Paul set out 5 main rules of Twitchhiker:
1. He could only accept offers of travel and accommodation from people on Twitter
2. He could not make any travel plans further than three days in advance.
3. He could only spend money on food, drink and anything that fitted in his suitcase.
4. If there was more than one offer, he chose. If there was only one offer, he had to take it within 48 hours.
5. If he was unable to move on from a location within 48 hours, the challenge was over and he would go home.
Part travelogue, part adventure, you will find yourself engrossed in the story from the off, willing Paul to get to the next stage; admiring his bravery at being completely at the mercy of strangers. There are bizarre, sometimes surreal moments, there are moments tinged with sadness and times when you will literally be laughing out loud.
However, this book is not just an entertaining read – it is an inspirational read. It is about faith and trust, support and encouragement. I would recommend this book to anybody who is in need of some motivation or inspiration – it really does restore your faith in good old human nature.
One point which particularly struck a chord with me was when Paul was asked “Why?”
“We all have a dozen ideas a day, and amongst them we occasionally have one that is unique and wonderful. Most of us won’t act, citing our jobs, family, bank balances or other excuses, only to suffer the teeth-grinding frustration of hearing months later that somebody else had not only a similar idea, but the guts to try it….. “
I think nearly all of us can relate to that…..
An entertaining and inspiring read – 8/10